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Vegetarian

A salmon sandwich to remember – and an ode to herbs de Provence

There is something really magical about the flavor and smell of herbs de Provence. Alluring and thoroughly perfumed, this potent herb mix reminds me of summer and makes me dream of future vacations in the South of France. As a matter of fact, visiting France has always been a (culinary) dream of mine. Hopefully I’ll get there one day: I’ll get to touch and smell the endless lavender fields I’ve seen in the movies, I’ll visit some of the famous French vineyards, and I’ll feast on rustic dishes which will remain implanted in my memory forever.

In the meantime however, I am glad to be able to recreate the culinary spirit of France by using herbs de Provence, and I only wish I’d known more ways to incorporate them into my recipes. Sadly, due to my lack of spare time to do any cooking at all (!) nowadays, I have had no chance to do any research or to come up with any new recipes – so I’ve stuck to using this herb mix in some old, tried-and-tested dishes, such as the fish sandwich below. Keep Reading

Veggie and mozzarella bliss: my mushroom panino – made in a hurry!

What is one of the things I like about mushrooms? They can cook really fast – and fast is all I need now, when I’m so busy with work and with the baby 🙂

Truth is I’ve been incredibly busy these past few weeks, and as much I’ve been meaning to make more elaborate dishes, time has always got in the way. At least with panini and sandwiches you don’t need a lot of time. Plus, you can always use items from your pantry and/or fridge, which means that you don’t have to find a “window” in your day to go shopping, and to make and carry around elaborate shopping lists. I couldn’t do either the other day, so I decided to use up a portabella mushroom, some mini peppers and two ovolini I had been storing in my fridge for awhile to make a vegetarian panino for myself and my husband. Keep Reading

Bringing together the produce stand and the pantry: the story of my “transitional” salad

I don’t know about you guys, but I can see fall creeping in. Birds are not as chirpy as they used to be, nights are getting longer, and mornings are getting chilly – so chilly that I actually had to put on a coat yesterday morning, when I went out to water the plants. This summer has been very challenging for me, as a new mom. However, it has also been a lot of fun: seeing my little one grow up, noticing small changes in her almost daily, has made my journey sweet and unbelievably rewarding. Why do good times have to go by so fast? 🙁

With summer almost behind us and with fall coming up shortly, I wanted to prepare a dish to capture the spirit of this transitional, in-between seasons, period – so earlier this week I made a salad using freshly bought produce and ingredients from my pantry. Keep Reading

I made “Little Lies” cookies: a story of sweetness and… lies?

“Tell me lies/Tell me sweet little lies” – this is how Fleetwood Mac’s song goes. I love this song – and I also love the cookies I am going to write about today. 🙂

This is a traditional fried cookie recipe I have from my mother, and intriguingly enough, the name of these cookies can be translated as “little lies.” You can find them in the Polish cuisine too, where they are called “angel wings.” To us though, they are “little lies.” I have been wondering why they bear this name in our cuisine. Is it because the exterior fools you into thinking they are crispy like cannoli or like the angel wings (their Polish counterpart), when in fact they are soft and light as a feather? Or is it because they trick you by appearing complicated, when in fact they couldn’t be easier to make? Questions and assumptions aside, these are delicious, quick to prepare, and very economical – you’ll get a lot of cookies if you use the quantities below.

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A balancing act and another trip down memory lane: fried cheese and salad for my summer lunch

I think I wrote this here before: I am a cheeseaholic! There is something really comforting and delicious in a slice of cheese – something nostalgic and wholesome, intriguing and assertive. I like to eat cheese on its own, but I also use it (as you may have noticed by now) in lots and lots of recipes. Moreover, our refrigerator is always stocked with different kinds of cheese to suit all preferences in our household. That’s it: I think we are the Cheeseaholic family 🙂

Whenever I have a good melting cheese – such as mozzarella or provolone – at my disposal, I like to fry it and to serve it accompanied by a salad or simply sandwiched between some good bread slices. Keep Reading

My Memorial Day menu: It’s fruits and veggies… and burgers, of course!

It took me awhile to come up with a Memorial Day menu. Nowadays, my mind tends to wander off aimlessly more often than not, and I have found that sleep deprivation affects my creativity. With summer just around the corner however, and with the local stores brimming with new crop fresh produce, I had extra incentives to work on this menu, and as I developed it I felt inspired and energized. I also experienced a great satisfaction seeing my family enjoy these dishes, which I intend to make again this coming weekend.

I used plenty of olive oil to make the salads below, as well as salt and pepper for seasoning. I started off by making tzatziki, the traditional Greek sauce which we usually eat as a dip. Keep Reading

Bring it on, bell peppers! My veggie burger recipe

I am in love with… bell peppers 🙂 As summer draws near and the days are getting longer and hotter, my body – exhausted by the calorific excesses of the winter season – craves fresh, light and nutritious dishes. Gone are the days when comfort foods were queens. Now is the perfect time to cook healthy and colorful dishes – and what can be healthier and more colorful than bell peppers? Rich in vitamin C and poor in calories, they are best eaten raw, alongside hummus or a light vinaigrette. Still, their natural beauty and abundance of flavor shine through whether served on their own or as ingredients in more elaborate dishes.

I like to use bell peppers to make vegetarian burgers. It is an easy recipe, with a few components which never fail to deliver. Keep Reading